Wave of submissions against destruction of Lions Fountain
UPDATE 11.45am: LISMORE mayor Jenny Dowell says Lismore City Council will back the grass roots push to preserve the Lions fountain, reversing its original proposal to pull it down.
The mayor said there had been a lot of angst in the community about the proposal to replace the fountain and the council had taken that into account.
"Right from the start when we realised how upset people were, we decided to try to preserve the fountain," Cr Dowell said.
"Staff wanted to have some assurances that Lions club would be happy giving the money they had collected for the restoration of the fountain and the associated new artworks.
"We now have a resolution from the Lions Club they are happy to do that."
Lions clubs had previously raised more than $60,000 which is expected to easily cover the restoration of the monument.
Lismore City Council would cover any ongoing maintenance and running costs.
"We believe we've got a good outcome that can go ahead," Cr Dowell said.
"The result will be a restoration of the fountain plus mosaics on concrete benches or seats.
"That's not set in stone, but in principle it will be the restoration of the fountain and some new mosaics which tell the story of Lions in its first 70 years.
"I have every confidence that council will endorse that."
The proposal will be formally put to councillors at the December council meeting.
INITIAL REPORT: A CAMPAIGN by local Lions clubs has inspired an avalanche of submissions against Lismore City Council's proposal to pull it down.
Lismore City Lions Club president Nancy Casson said the campaign had received 618 submissions which she presented to the council yesterday.
Ms Casson said she was "thrilled" with the public support.
"We went up yesterday and presented them to (Lismore City Council executive director sustainable development) Brent McAlister.
"A lot people also said they'd emailed the council.
"The one I actually placed right on top of the pile was from Max Tresize, the son of Bill Tresize who staretd Lions in Australia.
After the huge grass roots push to preserve the fountain and overturn the original plan to replace it with a more contemporary Lions-themed public art work, Ms Casson said she believed the community would prevail.
"They realise how much public support is behind keeping the fountain," she said.
"This is obviously what the community of Lismore are wanting."
Lions local district governor Peter Oliver, who originally supported the demolition of the fountain, has also reversed his decision in light of the public support for its restoration.